Color in combination with texture are two powerful tools to bring a work of art to life. They draw the viewer in and can either have calming or overly lively effects. Granted, each and every one of us are affected differently by art. Nevertheless, there are certain physiological responses we all have – if only subconsciously – to works of art that were purposefully created with different artistic means.

Texture is especially important when it comes to evoking emotions and feelings. Smooth and rough surfaces can either have an active or even soothing effect – when either physically touched or visually perceived. Because of that, images can be alive and greatly play with our minds. If we let ourselves be drawn in by them and let go of our own limitations, we can feel and experience the true impact they have on our minds and souls.

Texture Breathing Life into Artwork

We find sensual joy in visual art. Without texture, different surfaces would not exist. The latter, in return, plays a huge part in our visual enjoyment of a painting, photograph, or installation, for instance. Moreover, texture gives an image its dimension. It defines whether we perceive an artwork as two-, three- or even four-dimensional. Texture breathes life into art.

Perfect Imperfect

What do you see? – Los Angeles, CA, USA

Look at the photograph above. Pause for a moment. Are you entering an arcade with a million stars on the sky? Or a room that is an illusion of reality? Some see a modernized half a trunk of a tree with its overhanging crown as a hyper-real illustration. At its end, the orange sky symbolizes an imaginary sunset. What do you see?

The photograph presents us with different layers of visual texture that, in combination with a pop of orange, keeps our minds occupied. Within a lively, dotted, cooling blue three-dimensional layer, the orange provides stability for the beholder. Yet, it allows him to be alert. Therefore, it isn’t necessarily calming. It helps our eyes to rest for a moment, before flickering wide open again and getting lost in the moving parts in the upper half of the photograph. Let us be moved by this image, its dotted texture and various levels of depth.

Dimensional Perception

Texture helps to jump through dimensions; from two- to three-dimensional perception. It is an abstract work of art you have to allow yourself to get lost in. Move with the lines of the image. The thin blue line that might represent the rail of a glass barrier creates a two-dimensional effect in the lower part of the photograph. This part exudes more calm and quietness.

Please note that the image above, “Perfect Imperfect”, is part of the Abstract Portfolio and only available upon request. 

Vivid Interplay Between Color and Texture

The interplay of color and texture are powerful. They lead to a living work of art that seems more graspable. Here, the vertical light blue dotted lines are forming structure that “City Walk” and two barely noticeably curved vertical lines above the words are slightly disrupting.

The eye is moving left and right; the fine lines against the cooling blue lead to a vivid display. Reading “City Walk” and looking at those vertical lines might remind us of the street layout in U.S. cities. Only the horizontal roads seem to be missing. Lines provide clarity. In this case, however, not necessarily focus. The eye is dancing back and force between the deep blue and white, here and there resting on the highlighted “City Walk” sign in the middle. The seemingly structured pattern begins to sway. As the eyes get hot from moving, the color blue, however, soothes our bodies. We somehow cool down. It has a refreshing effect.

Maybe this is the perfect way to put this photographic blue art into words:

Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again. – L. Frank Baum

And this is exactly what the color blue does: making us feel energized; alive; breathing in the artistic way of life. Because really, art is everywhere. You just have to allow your mind to see it.